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Exact Staff News

  • Stop Hiring Clones!

    07/22/16 10:00 AM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Uncategorized | Leave a Comment
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    Want to make your business stronger? More agile? More resilient?

    Stop hiring clones!

    Scientific research provides support for the very real (and troubling) tendency managers have to select candidates who are similar to themselves in terms of leisure activities, social markers and personal tastes. Even when companies have high levels of demographic diversity, they still often have deep-seated homogeneity when it comes to the ways employees think and behave.

    Why? Because our brains prefer the familiar. And without a rigorous, objective set of criteria against which to judge a candidate’s merit, we tend to favor people like ourselves.

    While hiring people who mesh with your company’s culture and share similar interests is comfortable, it can also be dangerous. Over time, a company comprised of people who think and act in the same ways experiences less constructive conflict – and as a result, less innovation.

    So if you want to strengthen your organization, stop hiring people exactly like you – and do these things instead:

    Broaden your definition of diversity.

    Typically, employers think of diversity in terms of race, ethnicity, age, gender and/or sexual orientation. Take things a step further by also seeking out candidates who are diverse in terms of their skills, attitudes, interests, experiences, backgrounds and beliefs.

    Guard against “mirror bias.”

    As the name implies, this is the tendency of interviewers to favor candidates who remind them of themselves – regardless of those candidates’ skills and experience. Without proper training, interviewers often seek out evidence supporting their initial reactions to candidates while filtering out conflicting information.  As a result, perceptions turn into reality, and talented individuals are removed from consideration simply because they’re too different.

    Make sure that interviewers and hiring managers alike understand the negative hiring impact mirror bias can create. Teach them to guard against premature judgments, and to wait until all the evidence is in before making a decision about a candidate.

    Standardize hiring.

    Structured processes, standard questions and objective evaluation criteria all protect your organization from the negative effects of interviewing biases. To further enhance results, require interviewers to support their candidate evaluations with specific examples – as opposed to opinions or “gut feelings.”

    Choose the right staffing partner.

    With a national presence, and a full complement of staffing and placement services, Exact Staff can rapidly deliver exceptional people to build your core team: diverse, independent thinkers who mesh with your culture, but who also bring complementary experience and fresh perspectives to tackle your toughest challenges.

    What can we do for y-ou?

    Contact a staffing expert at your local Exact Staff office today.

Want to Drive Innovation? Make Sure You Have the Right Keys

07/20/16 9:30 AM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers | Leave a Comment
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Autonomous vehicles.

Wearable pain-relief technology.

Eye-tracking software that controls computers.

They’re all real. And for the smart risk-takers who have driven their success, they’re extremely profitable.

Why doesn’t every company develop game-changing products like these guys? Mostly because they don’t understand these keys to driving innovation:

Challenge the status quo.

Instead of shying away from threats or change, discuss your organization’s toughest problems with employees. Challenge your team each day to share new thoughts (even contrary, far-fetched or unpopular ideas), and teach them to disagree without being confrontational.

Don’t wait for 100% consensus.

Nothing thwarts innovation like waiting for everyone to agree before moving forward with a fresh idea. Make sure your team leaders have enough independence in decision-making to innovate. Foster a culture in which individuals are respected for creating – even when they don’t have full consensus on their methods.

Likewise, streamline innovators’ efforts by eliminating unnecessary interim rounds of approval and feedback during the development stage. When you trust employees to see their own work through to completion, you help them maintain critical confidence and momentum.

Increase tolerance for uncertainty.

Help employees get more comfortable with making decisions and taking action, even when information is incomplete. To push through indecisiveness, ask questions like: “How much to we really need to know before it’s acceptable to make a decision?”

Have your team’s back.

Build internal relationships based on respect, trust and shared confidence. Make it clear, through your words and actions, that you are an advocate for their best ideas. Most of all, make it okay to fail:

  • Outline acceptable parameters for taking calculated risks.
  • Do not demean or punish employees for trying something that does not work out.
  • When an employee fails, help your whole team learn from the mistake.

Nix whining, criticism and other innovation-killing behavior.

Not surprisingly, an oppressive culture stifles creativity. Instead of punishing mistakes as a way to promote success, celebrate employees who find solutions to problems. Encourage “can do” behaviors. Enlist your biggest critics and whiners in developing a more supportive environment that encourages new ways of thinking.

Drive innovation with intelligent staffing.

As a leading national staffing agency, Exact Staff can provide the talented people and smart staffing solutions to turn your innovative ideas into reality.

To develop the best strategy for your organization, we invite you to schedule a free workforce consultation with us. Together we can assess your needs, brainstorm options and design creative solutions to help you overcome whatever workforce or hiring challenges you face.

How to Prevent Negativity from Creeping into Your Corporate Culture

07/13/16 12:55 PM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers | Leave a Comment
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Debbie Downers. Negative Nellys. Haters.

Most organizations have them. But whatever you call them, one thing is certain: workplace negativity is like a disease. Let it creep into your corporate culture, and it will rapidly fuel disengagement, distrust, turnover, diminished productivity – and sheer misery (who wants to work in an environment like that?).

Your bottom line will take a hit, too. According to this CCP Inc. study on workplace conflict, U.S. employees spent 2.8 hours per week dealing with conflict and other negativity. This equates to approximately $359 billion in paid hours (based on average hourly earnings of $17.95), equal to 385 million working days.

Is there a cure for all the griping, hostility and backbiting? Absolutely. Follow Exact Staff’s “prescription” for preventing negativity from undermining the success of your team:

Encourage constructive conflict.

One of the best ways to eliminate negativity is by channeling it in a healthier way. When employees disagree and “lock horns,” train them to view the situation differently. Teach them how to understand the other’s viewpoint, appreciate differences and focus on solutions. Though discussions may become heated and contentious, they can lead to positive outcomes if managed properly.

Integrate positivity.

Want to really make positivity a permanent part of your corporate culture? Add it to your organization’s list of core values. Make it a hiring requirement. Share positive work stories in weekly business meetings. Have more fun at work. Do whatever you can to weave optimism into the fabric of your organization.

Keep your ear to the ground.

Banishing negativity isn’t a once-and-done event; it’s a continual process. To keep it at bay, check in with your employees several times each year. Discuss their observations and concerns about your corporate culture. If you learn about potential problems, take feedback seriously – and act decisively. Proactively combating negativity sends a clear message that you take corporate culture seriously – and truly care about your employees.

Hire smarter.

Sometimes you just have to cut bad apples loose. Make it a goal to release chronically negative employees and systematically replace them with staunch optimists. Look for individuals who can engage in healthy conflict with a positive attitude, respect others and are upbeat even in tough circumstances.

Need more positive people on your team?

Exact Staff’s recruiting experts will refer candidates with the personality traits and soft skills to help you build a more positive culture. Contact our national employment agency today to get started.

You Treat Your Customers Well – But What about Your Employees?

07/6/16 10:00 AM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers | Leave a Comment
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Time for a quick reality check: when a co-worker walks into your office with a request, do you treat him as well as you would like to be treated? Or as well as new client you’re trying to land?


If so, no need to read this post – you’re already treating employees as well as customers. But if you hesitated in your response (even for a fraction of a second), you need to read this.

When organizational leaders like you apply the “golden rule” to the way they treat employees, it’s more than polite or good etiquette. It’s great for business – improving motivation, productivity, loyalty and even your bottom line.

But while enhancing your employees’ work experience isn’t rocket science, it does require a focused approach to yield the results you want. Below, you’ll find four ways to apply the “golden rule” and improve your staff’s work experience (boosting your business in the process):

Understand what a great experience really means.

In other words, know what matters to your employees. Whether it’s a front-line worker or a mid-level manager, people typically look for the following essential elements at work:

  • Clear, honest, respectful communication in all forms (even when work becomes challenging).
  • On-time delivery. People in your organization should honor their commitments, doing what they say they will do, when they say they’ll do it.
  • A commitment to excellent internal customer service. Employees in your organization should take as much pride and care in serving one another as they do in serving the needs of your external customers.

If you’re unsure what matters most to employees, just ask them! Conduct an anonymous survey to encourage candid feedback. Make it clear how the information will be used, and provide employees with an overview of what you learn and plan to implement.

Build trust.

Trust creates a solid foundation upon which to build a great culture. Read this earlier post on fostering employee trust to drive innovation, efficiency and retention in your organization.

Find ways to make employees look good.

How would you feel if one of your peers went to your boss to tell him what a great job you’re doing? Pretty great, right? Not surprisingly, your employees would feel the same way. So be the start of something great in your organization. Find ways to: support your employees’ success; make their jobs easier; and make them look great (internally and externally).

Provide the support they need.

When your staff has adequate support, they’re free to do their best work. Whether it’s a single temporary for a day or an entire project team, Exact Staff provides a range of staffing and placement services to increase motivation, improve productivity and create a healthier bottom line.

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